Urn For Biab

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bignath

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Hey guys,

Would this be good enough to get me started doing BIAB?

http://www.trademe.co.nz/Browse/Listing.aspx?id=523731037
You could do it, you may either have to settle for slightly smaller batches, or brew higher gravity and dilute, or do a manual sparge.

the simplicity of BIAB though is it's simplicity, and with that in mind, it's a borderline suitability for capacity.

Are you bottling or kegging?

A typical single batch pre boil volume for a 20-21lt batch (to fill a keg and account for some losses) is around 26/27lt's.

Your definitely gonna cut it close, but if you go over gravity and dilute during or after the boil, OR do a separate sparge and add runnings back to the urn, you'll be ok.

EDIT:
Hmmmmm, just saw it's only 1500W. That's gonna take some time to get anywhere.
I probably wouldn't bother with it considering it's borderline size, and under powered element. Would probably be fine for a sporting club if they got there hours before a game to load it up and switch it on, but it would take ages i reckon to heat for strike water, and then raise to boil, and it may also really struggle to actually boil.
 

bignath

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that one's a better bet.

At 38lt you can BIAB high strength beers easily for a standard batch, won't need to sparge.....too easy.

Only thing is the power capacity on that one. Ideally i'd be aiming for 2200-2400W.

If you had access to an immersion element, and could pick this urn up for not much more than the $100 current bid, then you'd be in business.
 

wbosher

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It says "Adjustable Thermostat from 30 110 degrees", so I would think it should be able to boil...I hope.
 

bignath

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It says "Adjustable Thermostat from 30 110 degrees", so I would think it should be able to boil...I hope.

yeah, but my car stereo is 4x50W (200w output), and no bloody way is it twice as loud as my 100W Marshall.

the muso's on here will understand...

Wort boils differently than water.

They may not have "rated" that at full volume capacity either.

They most likely will not have taken into account the elevation above or below sea level where you are located.

Trust me, 1500W in a cheap urn will seriously struggle to handle 26/27lt of wort.
 

wbosher

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I'm not likely to be doing any more than around 20-23L at a time, do you think it could handle that?

I am a muso, or at least used to be. There's a lot more around than I thought.
 

bignath

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I'm not likely to be doing any more than around 20-23L at a time, do you think it could handle that?
Preboil volume or finished volume?

who really knows.... i'm just not sure id take a chance.


I once pulled the trigger on a cheap "tea/coffee/crabcooker" urn on ebay. If you do a search you'll find numerous threads about this specific item.

From memory, it was 36lt, rated at 30-110deg, heating power was supposed to be 2200W. It had two elements, one 800W and the other 1200W.

Was a big piece of shit, and MOST other people that also bought one agree.

I've learnt my lesson with urns and power vs capacity. Either go with a crown or birko, or get a pot of whatever capacity you think you'll need after factoring in losses, and build an urn yourself. Elements are everywhere to put in a big ass pot.

Whilst it may in fact work (my cheap box of shit did for several brews), there is a big chance that any cheaper urn other than industry standard brands (crown, birko) will shit themselves very early on in it's career.

I'd probably walk away from it.

I've effectively made two digitally controlled "urns" over the past few years for my Single Vessel Recirculating BIAB rig in my signature.

Was really easy to do, and apart from blowing a cheap $8 element in the second brew by allowing it to be switched on with no liquid near it, neither rig has failed me yet.
 

wbosher

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Ok, your probably right, I'll leave it alone.

The only problem is I don't see too many others around, and ebay is not really a goer. The shipping for something like that from Aus or the US is crazy.

Might just look at getting a big stock pot and a gas burner for the garage. My wife would have a fit if I did it inside if the smell is as bad as people here say it is. :lol:
 

bignath

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Ok, your probably right, I'll leave it alone.

The only problem is I don't see too many others around, and ebay is not really a goer. The shipping for something like that from Aus or the US is crazy.

Might just look at getting a big stock pot and a gas burner for the garage. My wife would have a fit if I did it inside if the smell is as bad as people here say it is. :lol:
It's not just the "smell" that makes gas brewing inside a bad idea, it's the exact opposite.

Running a gas burner inside (or more specifically ANY enclosed space with poor ventilation) increases the risk of asphyxyating (spelling??) yourself....running out of oxygen.

I'm pretty sure that the gas burns odourless, and then takes all the available oxygen with it. I could have that wrong.

there is some conjecture of whether or not it's actually a problem, but the people that think it's a serious concern grossly outweigh the ones who don't, so therefore, i would advise to never use a gas burner designed for a huge pot inside.

If you've got the access to brew in the garage, you're all set with a big pot and a bag. Happy days.
 

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thedragon

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Wbosher, I was lucky enough to pick up a new-ish crown 40L for $200 from a brewer that wanted to upgrade. It's a great piece of equipment. I keep my batches to about 20L as it shortens the brew day - perhaps false economy but it works for me. Keep your eyes peeled, something will come up. It'll be better than buying a POS that you'll need to replace within a short period.
 

wbosher

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I just got myself a 50L stockpot for $40, that should be plenty big enough for any boil over.

Now looking for an LPG burner, guess I need at least a two ring?

Next mission is either a wort cooler or a bigass tub (for an ice bath) that I can dunk my new pot into. It's just a few mm too big to go into the laundry tub.

This is getting expensive and my wife is giving me funny looks. It'll be worth it though, can't wait to get into some AG. :)

EDIT: Sorry Diesel, missed your post. I might go for the gas burner for now, much cheaper. Wifey...funny looks...I don't want to become a born again virgin. ;)
 

bignath

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Good score mate, that's the shizzle..

I used to use a 50lt Keg as my HLT and another as my Kettle (boiler) on a three ring gas burner.

Did the job very easily, had to back off the largest ring to maybe 50-75% capacity to boil. That was doing 46lt preboil, which was including losses, big enough for a double batch.

You'll be able to pick up a new 3 ring burner for well under $100 (often closer to $50) and it'll gladly run off your bbq bottle with a standard regulator.

Dont believe the hype that you NEED a regulator upgrade to get a 3 ring to boil 50lt's.......it'll do it no worries at all, and pretty quickly too.

The ONLY problem with a rig like that, is that you will need to keep an eye out for boilovers if doing a double batch. They will tend to sneak up on you.

but as you said, if your just doing singles, you'll be absolutely fine.
 

wbosher

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Thanks Nath. Got my eye on a 3 ring burner for around $70. I think I can use my BBQ reg for it, got a question on the auction but should be good.

All I'll need then is a way to cool the wort, but if I go by Nick's post (fckn awesome by the way :D ), I can let it cool naturally.

Getting there...never thought I'd be doing AG so soon but Nick's BIAB thread had inspired me big time.
 

wbosher

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How does this sound for a first brew, got it off a local site for 1st timers. I changed the hops though.
For a 23 Litre recipe

4.6Kg Pale Malt
250g Crystal Malt

20g Cascade @ 60min
20g Cascade @ 40min
20g Cascade @ 20min

In case you hadn't guessed I've got some Cascade already (in fact it's all I've got). ;)

According to Brewmate, this will give an IBU of about 45, but with the 20 min addition should provide some flavour as well.

Any suggestions welcome. Shit I can't wait to do my first AG.
 

bignath

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How does this sound for a first brew, got it off a local site for 1st timers. I changed the hops though.
For a 23 Litre recipe

4.6Kg Pale Malt
250g Crystal Malt

20g Cascade @ 60min
20g Cascade @ 40min
20g Cascade @ 20min

In case you hadn't guessed I've got some Cascade already (in fact it's all I've got). ;)

According to Brewmate, this will give an IBU of about 45, but with the 20 min addition should provide some flavour as well.

Any suggestions welcome. Shit I can't wait to do my first AG.
Looks good mate, should be a tasty beer.

What yeast are you gonna use on it?

Got a way to crush your grain, or does your local shop do it?

All you need is a bag to mash in, and remember to lift the bag a little if your gonna apply heat during the mash. Or you could just shut off the gas just before you throw the grain in, and put the lid on and walk away.

You don't want to scorch your bag ;)

Oh, and take records of your first few batches. As many as you can, even if you think it's not important. The more recording you do in the early stages, the quicker you'll get your "rig" dialled in for consistent booze production.
 

wbosher

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Yeah, the LHBS can crush the grain for me.

Looking at US-05 yeast, might have a go at harvesting my current brew.

Yep, need a bag and still need to get the burner, soon I hope.

Thanks for the advice. :)

Should be able to get this on next weekend...if the kids will let me.
 

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